back to article No2ID calls in pledge cash to 'probe' ID Act's enabling laws

Anti-ID card campaign No2ID has called in the donations offered as part of its 2005 'refuse' pledge. The money, according to general secretary Guy Herbert, will in part be used to "probe" Government statutory instruments brought in to enable the ID scheme. Calling in the money now also allows No2ID to clear the decks for …


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  1. MrWeeble

    Pedantic comment

    Shirley is a Baroness, not a Dame

  2. Dave

    Not Polite

    "so that at the end of the recess three men and a dog vote them through""

    That's not a very polite description of the Home Secretary and her under-minsters...

  3. Anonymous Coward

    Silly Government

    Because the government created the "Identity Cards Act" and then plan to do everything else through "secondary legislation", they have rather kindly opened up much of this to Judicial Review. Which was nice of them. Although obviously, the only way to get the ID Cards Act thrown out is to have the ECJ rule it as 'incompatible' with European Law. Which isn't likely really...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    'tis a pity that in what is supposed to be a democracy, that it comes to this. Politicians should listen to the people, not force the people to oppose them.

  5. Richard Dyce

    ... you forgot to mention that they take paypal

    Just in case you're too lazy to write a cheque (as I am).

  6. James Pickett


    "called in the donations"

    Er, not to me, they haven't. I wouldn't even know about it if I hadn't read your piece, so I guess (with all due respect to El Reg) that funds will be a bit slow to arrive...

  7. nick brice

    @James Pickett

    A messages was sent this morning - maybe your e-mail address has changed in the meantime?

  8. David Simpson

    about as truthful as the government then

    Is collecting pledges for a defense fund and then calling the pledges in for a pre-emptive campaign less truthful than the goverment saying they don't intend to make ID cards compulsory.

    I do think it is.

    I won't be coughing up on my pledge until someone needs defending for refusing the ID card and I hope everyone else takes the same attitude - afterall where will we be if we satisfy our pledges to refuse the card and there is no defense fund because a few wannabe politicians have wasted it all on their expenses.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @David Simpson

    Right so you reckon we should wait until someone is prosecuted THEN NO2ID collect the pledges? That trusting soul will no doubt be willing to fund their own case while money comes in?

    Volunteering to be the test case are you? Bet you're not.

    They'll be getting my tenner. My name is on "the list" too :-)

  10. John Lettice (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Pedantic comment

    An example of the old journalist rule, if you're sure you don't need to check it then you're going to get it wrong. I'll go fix it. (-:

  11. Tom Chiverton

    scamed ?

    Like David, I thought I was pledging to defend people who had refused, not to engage on random fishing exercises.

  12. David Harper

    @David Simpson

    "First, they came for the Jews, and I said nothing, because I was not a Jew ..."

    My tenner is already in the post

  13. Andy Silver badge

    also @David Simpson

    It's only a tenner, FFS. Surely, being a highly paid IT bod and Reg reader, you'll be ready to hand over another one later, should it prove necessary. How much is a pint of beer these days?


  14. Ian


    £1.70 if you live in Manchester and drink Joey Holts in a back street local.

  15. John Lettice (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: scamed ?

    Guy Herbert has asked me to post his reply to this and similar comments. I am of course happy to oblige, and personally remain perfectly happy to be sending No2ID my own pledge money, and maybe a bit more in consideration of the Government being even more irritating than they were two years ago. Here's Guy:

    "Those who misunderstood my comment to John Lettice as meaning NO2ID would be conducting some sort of legal experimentation to amuse lawyers - and therefore they damn well won't be standing by their promise to contribute to our legal fund - may be doing so willfully. I cannot but be aware that we can never satisfy some people, and that we have more than our share of the downright suspicious.

    "However, for those who are genuinely confused, probing the law is how a legal fund works. You don't do the enemy any damage by wrapping yourself in Magna Carta or ECHR (according to taste) and defying loudly. You find out where it is badly drafted, inconsistent or self-defeating and you fight prosecutions, penalties and so forth on those grounds. The point is to resist effectively; stop the law working as the Home Office intends; make it less easy for the IPS to trample ordinary people with its herd of white elephants.

    "Those who are envious as well as suspicous will want to be reassured that we aren't going to waste money on "fat-cat lawyers". We couldn't afford them with only £100 grand in the kitty. Obviously we are hoping to have much more eventually, but it is still only likely to cover incidental expenses and maybe some hardship support for any brave guinea-pigs whose cases we take. Fortunately a number of distinguished lawyers have already shown an interest in working with us pro bono, even before we've got anything constructive for them to do."

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: ... you forgot to mention that they take paypal

    You can also do a bank transfer if you're too lazy to use Paypal (and don't like the fact that Paypal take a cut of the donations)

    My tenner was duly transferred about 5 minutes ago ...

  17. Andy Silver badge


    Thanks Ian. I have no idea what Joey Holts is, perhaps because I don't live in Manchester.

    So, for the imbibers of Joey Holts in back street locals, that makes approximately the price of a round or two in exchange for your liberty. Seems fair to me.

    To any remaining doubters, I'd like to bring attention to the actual words of the pledge: "I will refuse to register for an ID card and will donate £10 to a legal defence fund but only if 10,000 other people will also make this same pledge".

    Well, rather more than 10,000 other people did make that pledge, me included. So stump up!


  18. Solomon Grundy
    Thumb Up

    Yea Guy Herbert

    What a great response! So often the execs in any organization sit back and expect their marketing alone to get the message out and you never hear from senior leadership until the ship is sinking. Mr. Herbert is acting pro-actively to make sure people understand his mission and how he plans to drive it to success. Yea for him!

    P.S. I'm not a Brit, but I think the ID card scheme/scam is really, really bad and I hope if it dies in the U.K. then something similar will never make it to the U.S.

    I wonder how I send them a money order they can cash? If I put my name on a check or use PayPal the ninjas will be here to take me to Cuba before the weekend is out.

  19. William Doohan
    Gates Horns

    @S. Grundy

    We already have ID's in the US. Your driver's license. And the Congress has already passed a law that mandates that all driver's license's in all the states are made compatible by... 2010 (?) [not sure of the exact date]

  20. Jim Lewis

    @ William Doohan

    The issue is not so much the card itself, (although many people have misgivings about having to prove their identity when challenged, at present we are not legally obliged to carry identifying documents etc, unlike many other countries in the world), so much as the database to which these cards will be linked, this database will contain details about people's private lives that would make your toes curl! and of course will be guarded by and accessed by god knows who.

    Other rights, such as free health service at point of delivery will also become prdeicated on being able to produce an ID card, in direct contravention of one of the principles on which the NHS was founded.

    See for more detail.

  21. David Simpson

    I maintain

    that my pledge was for defense not provocative actions that may harden government attitudes to ID cards.

    Frankly I think the No2id campaigners are considerable less truthful in their claims than the government and routinely exagerate the dangers for their own political purposes.

    Until we have proof that the technology works there is absolutely no need to be spending other people's money that was pledged for defense NOT attack.

  22. Anonymous Coward

    @David Simpson

    "pledged for defense NOT attack."

    There is quite a body of evidence to suggest that spelling of defence actually MEANS attack.

    No2ID for their part, are properly defending the interests of affected individuals by ascertaining what exactly they are going to be attacked with.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ David Harper (more important pedantry)

    "First, they came for the Jews, and I said nothing, because I was not a Jew ..."

    While I understand your meaning, and completely agree with you, that quotation is notoriously inaccurate. What Martin Niemoeller actually said was this (translated from German, of course):

    "When the Nazis arrested the Communists, I said nothing; after all, I was not a Communist.

    "When they locked up the Social Democrats, I said nothing; after all, I was not a Social Democrat.

    "When they arrested the trade unionists, I said nothing; after all, I was not a trade unionist.

    "When they arrested the Jews, I said nothing; after all, I was not a Jew.

    "When they arrested me, there was no longer anyone who could protest".

    Three guesses why most people nowadays conveniently omit the first three lines.

  24. Solomon Grundy

    @William Doohan

    Driver's licenses are not at all the same as a national ID card. Drivers license's are optional and even after their standardization they will still be optional.

    At not point has congress even come close to approving a bill that says you must present ID upon request by the law. You only have to do that if you're driving a car or buying a controlled product. Otherwise you do not have to have any form of ID.

    P.S. standardizing drivers licenses is a good idea anyway. I travel a lot and I've had more than a bit of trouble buying booze with my Tennessee drivers license in western and New England states.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    As I read the pledge, "defence" would cover both defending the public from this government oppression ever becoming law in the first place; AND defending any test case brought against the poor sods who first get arrested, if, God forbid, it ever got that far.

    The £10 is in the post.

    Maybe a second pledge should be started for those who missed the first run :-)

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Three guesses why most people nowadays conveniently omit the first three lines."

    Because folk can easliy relate to the line referring to Jews, and understand the point being made: but the other lines add nothing more ?

  27. Anonymous Coward

    @Tom Welsh (Niemöller was not perfect)

    From one of Niemöller's sermons in 1935: "What is the reason for [their] obvious punishment, which has lasted for thousands of years? Dear brethren, the reason is easily given: the Jews brought the Christ of God to the cross!" According to Holocaust scholar Robert Michael, Niemöller agreed with the Nazis' position on the Jewish question"

    References are included in the Wikipedia article. Read the entire article, he did change his position on the Jews after being put in a concentration camp himself as punishment for fighting the Nazi influence on his own church and blames his initial support on the basis of Hitler deviating from his initial promises.

    I am in fact in favour of ID cards. I'm asian but not a muslim (policement can't tell unfortunately - if you look asian you're a potential islamic extremist... and no, I don't have a beard) - I work in London and have been stopped "randomly" thanks to the Terrorism Act. The Police National Computer checks (they radio in the data) on my ID took quite a lot of time, checking an ID card should take a minutes. Unless they repeal the Terrorism Act legislation and don't have the power to stop, search and question you without reason I'd rather have a card to speed the whole process up.

  28. John PM Chappell
    Thumb Up


    ... the wording on the pledge amounts to "If 10K others give a tenner, I will also" - since more than that 10K have indeed so pledged, the call is valid.

    This ignores the fact that any attempt to claim "But it is not defence!" woefully and possibly wilfully misunderstands the nature of British (or more accurately, English & Welsh) law. It's sensible and perhaps even necessary to first establish any obvious flaws and contradictions in the law as presently in force, not least because it may prove impossible or extremely difficult to oppose on any other grounds.

    For the record, I pledged, openly and will be sending along the tenner. The message was definitely sent out and I received it before seeing this story, too.

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